Land Use & Municipal Law

Jackson Walker’s land use and municipal law practice group – the largest in the Southwest – handles transactions from the city to the suburbs and beyond. Whether it’s an urban redevelopment, industrial complex, or a brand-new neighborhood, we assist clients with securing appropriate zoning, addressing thoroughfare and circulation issues, and obtaining necessary approvals. We also help our clients devise and implement the most cost-effective approaches to their projects.

Bill Dahlstrom is a JW partner who concentrates on land use. He has a land use planning background and is a Fellow in the College of the American Institute of Certified Planners. Bill incorporates a planning and problem-solving process in land use and land development issues. He works with clients to identify the land use approvals most appropriate for their projects and assists them in obtaining those approvals from public agencies. In his more than 30 years of practice, he’s handled master planned developments, subdivision and annexation issues, special districts, conservation projects, and much more.

Suzan Kedron is another partner who regularly assists clients in their land use needs. Suzan helps our clients get things done at city hall. She has a unique way of marrying modern technology with the bureaucracy of city hall. Her background in architecture from Columbia in New York and her passion for Real Estate combines to efficiently assist clients through the entitlement process. And, her personal interest in technology helps the old and new economy industries navigate their way through the morass of municipal and state regulation.

Another of these skilled attorneys in municipal law is Susan Mead. Susan represents clients in matters of zoning, planning, and entitlements law. Brian M. Jones, President and CEO of Forest City Development California, Inc., had this to say about Susan: “Susan has played a major role in our success in North Texas, and she has exemplified professionalism, integrity, and steadfast commitment in helping us achieve our development objectives. Her vast experience with and knowledge of public/private partnerships and all entitlement matters has earned Susan our admiration and gratitude. We are proud of our association with Susan and the entire Jackson Walker legal team.”

In addition to Suzan, Susan, and Bill, Jackson Walker’s practice group includes many experienced attorneys who handle land use entitlements for developments as diverse as due diligence review, historic preservation projects, right-of-way abandonments, public/private partnership incentives including tax increment financing and municipal utility districts, infrastructure financing, variances and special exceptions, and environmental reviews.

  • Representation of client on approval of creative “form-based” zoning and tax increment financing district for significant regional mixed-use development – Richardson, Texas
  • Approval of contentious rezoning and redevelopment of obsolete townhomes for national multifamily developer and all-boys’ college preparatory private school – Dallas
  • Zoning for mixed use project and potential professional basketball team facility/arena – Dallas
  • Rezoning and replat for new lodging concept- Richardson
  • Economic incentives for a 90 acre mixed-use project in Mansfield, Texas
  • Zoning for 90-acre mixed-use redevelopment – Plano
  • Controversial zoning approval for nationally-known private school – Dallas
  • Signage issues Dallas Arts District SPSD
  • Skybridge License across major thoroughfare
  • Major zoning change for all-girls’ private high school for athletic field – Dallas
  • Zoning approval and site plan approval for affordable housing development – Fort Worth
  • Zoning approval for storage facility – Fort Worth
  • Multiple zoning approvals for 125-acre mixed-use development (office, multifamily, retail, restaurant, townhomes) along SH 190 – Plano
  • Zoning and tax abatement approval for cold storage distribution center – Sunnyvale
  • Zoning approval for creative multifamily development – Grand Prairie
  • Las Colinas Association approval for corporate lodging facility – Irving
  • Mixed use zoning approval – Richardson
  • Zoning approval for memory care/retirement housing – Dallas
  • Controversial zoning for hotel – Lancaster
  • Rezoning for multifamily and retail uses on a tract in historic downtown Grapevine, Texas
  • Rezoning for private high school – Addison, Texas
  • Rezoning for prominent private school- Dallas
  • Rezoning for university – Richardson
  • Tarrant County approval of tax abatement agreement for new corporate headquarters – Fort Worth
  • Webb County Approval of a Tax Abatement Agreement for retail center redevelopment- Laredo
  • Multiple single-family lots rezoning for Dallas Area Habitat for Humanity
Luke Franz and Shannon Field Quine

April 7, 2020
Insights

How DFW Planning Departments Are Responding to COVID-19 Pandemic

As North Texas counties issue “shelter-in-place” orders in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, cities are currently updating their procedures for development and zoning to shift most or all of their functions to be operational online.

July 8, 2019
Insights

Texas Legislative Update: New Laws Impacting Real Estate Developers and Builders

More than 10,000 bills were filed during the 86th Texas legislative session. Some of the bills that were filed and ultimately signed into law specifically impact the real estate and construction industries.

June 27, 2019
Insights

SCOTUS Decision: Property Owners Can Bring Takings Claims Straight to Federal Court

On June 21, 2019, the Supreme Court of the United States decided Knick v. Township of Scott, Pennsylvania, holding that a property owner is not required to first bring a takings claim in state court.

July 23, 2018
Attorney News

Pam Madere Joins Judging Committee for 2018 Commercial Real Estate Awards

Jackson Walker partner Pamela Madere, who chairs the Real Estate Council of Austin Board of Directors, served on the judging committee for Austin Business Journal’s 2018 Commercial Real Estate Awards.

June 8, 2018
Mentions

“Austin Business Journal” Quotes Pam Madere on CodeNEXT Concerns

Five years ago, the city of Austin set out to develop the first major rewrite of the city’s land development code in 30 years.

June 4, 2018
Insights

Dallas Court of Appeals Holds Municipalities Cannot Enforce Building Codes in Their ETJs

Dallas Court of Appeals finds that a home-rule city lacks authority to require landowners developing property in the city’s extraterritorial jurisdiction (ETJ) to obtain city building permits, inspections and approvals, and pay-related fees.

February 16, 2018
Attorney News

Jackson Walker Acquires Two Laterals in Real Estate, Wealth Planning

Jackson Walker welcomes Pamela Madere and Scott A. Schepps as partners in the firm’s Austin and Houston offices.

September 12, 2017
Insights

The Texas Tree Mitigation Fee Credit Bill is Resurrected from the Dead

Many developers must remove existing trees in order to build new homes or buildings. Some cities have required developers to pay fees, known as tree mitigation fees, as a condition for permitting the removal of the trees.

September 6, 2017
Attorney News

53 Jackson Walker Attorneys Named to 2017 “Texas Super Lawyers” List

Thomson Reuters has named 53 Jackson Walker attorneys to its 2017 ‘Texas Super Lawyers’ list. According to Thomson Reuters, the list recognizes a “credible, comprehensive and diverse” selection of “outstanding attorneys,” and serves as a resource for those in search of legal counsel.

August 21, 2017
Insights

Steven Dimitt and Mike Knapek Review Highly-Publicized RLUIPA Case for ABA Litigation Section

In a recent article for the Real Estate, Condemnation, and Trust section of the Litigation Committee of the American Bar Association, Jackson Walker partners Steven Dimitt and Mike Knapek reviewed an important decision related to the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act of 2000 (RLUIPA).

More Land Use & Municipal Law News